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Small Giants: Measurements Continued

August 9, 2007

I can’t keep from thinking about this. I wonder if a lot of moral failing by Pastors is caused by this false belief. The desire to grow becomes consuming. You are measured by it, it tells people whether you are good or not. How much moral rot is allowed to fester because we need to keep the size? How many questionable calls made to keep the giving amount up?

Should we really be surprised when a renowned Pastor is outed on the public stage? His church certainly was growing and large. How many warning signs were ignored? How much of the problem came from being put in that situation? How much trouble was created because the mentality of God is blessing us blinded the troops? I don’t know for sure but what I am reading makes me wonder.

What I’m saying is maybe the people aren’t the problem, maybe the goals are. Maybe they are good men put in bad situations because they thought they were supposed to be there? What do you think?

How many Friends Days counted as successful because the numbers were huge though none come to Christ and we never see them again? How many Wii giveaways lauded because of huge numbers even though no lives were changed? I don’t know for sure but I wonder.

The book talks about owners selling their soul for the growth. It talks about them losing control, family and friends all in the pursuit of building something bigger and bigger. They do this because of the belief that they must grow bigger and bigger. If this happens when businesses seek this, what should we expect when churches do the same?

Speaking of growth to have growth you need capital. Each of the companies reported that it was the need for capital that brought them to their decision. To grow meant selling the company or going public and they had to decide if that was what they wanted to do. Some of the men who owned the companies written about had done that before, they saw what it did and didn’t want it again.

I think about finance when it comes to church. How many churches over extend themselves financially because of this idea of growth. How many are always just a few donors away from having everything covered? How many need growth to cover the bills? How many cut corners because of this? How many decisions are tainted, how many relationships destroyed all because we need more money because our focus is growth?

Now I will confess that I just finished a series on Starbucks who has certainly grown but they have core principles that keep them from losing sight. I think churches can grow but I think they better check their soul.

That is what really hit me. The book says each of these businesses that they profile have soul, or mojo, something that gives them their identity. The reason they don’t grow any larger is because they don’t want to lose this.

It wasn’t that long ago that someone said to me that they loved our personality, the way they felt at our church. I remember thinking don’t get to used to it because that will change as we grow. To be truthful I actually thought at the time this was a good thing. I can’t wait until we move beyond this homey atmosphere so that we can really grow.

I don’t think that way anymore and this book has really helped me see why. I don’t mind growth, don’t get me wrong. No, I don’t mind growth but my questions have changed. Now I want to make sure we keep our character, our soul in tact. If we can grow and still keep that then so be it but when that starts to go we need to plant a church or spin off or do something because I don’t want the headaches that come from the idea that you either grow or die.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 9, 2007 7:40 pm

    Sounds like a great book.
    I like books that changes the way think.

  2. August 10, 2007 2:08 am

    I am not familiar with these book, but it sounds interesting.

    As to your point about pastors who fall. Sure some probably get caught up in the hype to the point of losing control of ego and perspective, but I think most are good men who get caught up in a weakness which Satan uses to ensnare them.

    Thanks for bringing this book to my attention.

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